Dinners To Try This Week!

With the weather getting chillier, today I am sharing with you a roundup of my favourite 7 recipes to warm you up. Lockdown may have you feeling like every day is Groundhog Day, but your meals don’t have to follow suit! All of the below recipes I have selected are easy to cook, and will scratch that restaurant quality itch you may be missing!

Full recipe and ingredient lists are all linked below

Butternut Squash Soup
Cookie + Kate
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 55 minutes

best butternut squash soup recipe

During these Autumn months, I really love cooking and eating squash vegetables. Although technically a fruit, butternut squash is rich in Vitamin C, a source of Vitamin A and can be roasted, toasted, sautéed and puréed for soup! This meal will go down a treat, especially with some crusty bread.

Beef Goulash
Hairy Biker’s
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours and 35 minutes

Beef goulash

I first discovered this recipe as a student where a slow cooker was my best friend. Start preparing this in the morning and let it’s flavours marinade all day. This hearty dish can be served with either bread, rice or potatoes.

Pulled Pork Burger
Inspired Taste
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 8 hours

Two hands holding a sandwich filled with shredded pork and coleslaw.

Another slow cook meal of dreams. Serve this burger with a brioche bun for an instant gourmet spin. Use the leftovers for tacos, meaning you also double up on meal prep – that’s if there are any left!

Vegan Stew
Healthy Living James
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes

Sweet Potato & Black Bean Stew

I discovered this after having an intense craving for black beans and sweet potato, and boy you will not be disappointed! If you struggle to find black beans in the shops, you can absolutely swap it for spicy red chilli beans or kidney beans (or both!). I added these all and it was delicious! Serve with rice or quinoa.

Chicken Tray Bake
BBC Good Food
Prep Time: 30 minuted
Cook Time: 30 minutes – 1 hour

Ras-el-hanout chicken traybake

Who says you need to save Mediterranean food only for the Summer? This easy one pot recipe would make a lovely mid-week dinner or on days where you are short on time. If you don’t have any ras-el-hanout spice, I would recommend substituting it for your own spices which you may have at home. I used equal parts paprika, cinnamon, pepper, nutmeg and coriander instead. I also personally left out the fresh thyme, coriander and natural yogurt, and it still tasted amazing!

Veggie (& Vegan) Paella
BBC Good Food
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes – 1 hour

Vegetable paella

This vegetarian paella is sure to mix up your taste pallet. Rather than using saffron which can be very expensive, I use tumeric which adds enough spice and also gives that lovely golden yellow colour. I always find that rice takes at least an hour to cook though, so factor this in to avoid any hangry moments!

Chicken Katsu Curry
BBC Good Food
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes

Curry in bowls with rice and sauce

In absence of Wagamamas, try this easy-peasy recipe at home. If you want to simplify this even more, buy already breadcrumbed chicken like chicken goujons which will taste just as good. Unless you want to be fancy and serve this for guests, I don’t see the need for ribbon slices of cucumber and carrot either. Remember that this recipe does serve four and it will absolutely be too much sauce for just two, so either halve the required amount or keep it for leftovers the next day. Serve this meal with a wedge of lime and enjoy!

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5 Smoothie Recipes To Try Now

It’s the start of the summer season and a perfect opportunity to get smoothie making. Even if you don’t consider yourself talented in the kitchen, I’ve listed 5 tried and tested different smoothie recipes below that I guarantee are super easy to make. All you need is a blender and 5 minutes to spare! So what are you waiting for? Take some inspiration from the below and let’s get blending!

Morning Fuel
Forget your Weetabix, have you had your morning fuel?

A tasty smoothie sure to keep you full all morning!

This drink is great post workout or as a breakfast smoothie. Definitely guaranteed to keep keep you full!

1. Add one whole banana to the blender, with one heaped tablespoon of uncooked oats.
2. Pour in 3-5 tablespoons of greek yogurt (can be substituted for almond milk).
3. Boil the kettle and add mix teaspoon of coffee with 1/4 cup of boiling water.
4. Throw the ingredients together and blend.
5. Add one small teaspoon of honey to taste.

Watch this video to see me make this smoothie!

Super Smoothie
Green eyed beauty

Before adding spirulina
Finished smoothie!

There’s a reason why green smoothies are so popular. Not only is it a great way of mixing together all your left over vegetables and reducing waste, but it will give you a big dose of your daily health kick! I like to add spirulina to this recipe, which is rich in minerals like calcium, magnesium, zinc and selenium.

1. Juice 3-4 handfuls of either spinach or kale. These will quickly wilt so it won’t produce as much juice as you think.
2. In your blender, add half an avocado with one whole frozen banana, pouring in your kale/spinach juice.
3. Add a splash of almond milk. Mix together.
4. Pour into a glass and add one teaspoon of spirulina powder to stir in until it is all dissolved. Voilá!

Very Berry
A berry so good with no soggy bottoms in sight

A sweet smoothie sure to quickly become a favourite

This is my OG smoothie and is one of the easiest to make! I wrote about acai berries on this post back in 2019, but if you are unfamiliar with it, the taste can be likened to a mix of blackberries and unsweetened chocolate. I also like to add chia seeds to this smoothie. Chia seeds are full of fibre, protein and can even help support weight loss. Both of these ingredients are very nutritious and are great antioxidants!

1. Simply throw in one banana, a handful of blueberries, strawberries, raspberry’s and a dash of coconut milk and blend.
2. Pour into a glass and add one teaspoon of acai berry powder, plus one teaspoon of chia seeds.
3. Stir well and enjoy!

Weekend Refresh
R&R in one sip

Before spirulina
After spirulina; A great afternoon pick-me-up drink!

For days that I’m feeling like switching things up I go for a kiwi based smoothie. Kiwis are full of nutrients like vitamin C, vitamin K, vitamin E, folate, and potassium. They are also another great antioxidant!

1. Add one banana, a handful of blueberries and 2-3 small peeled kiwis with a dash of coconut milk to your blender.
2. Blend together and pour the smoothie into a glass.
3. Add one teaspoon of spirulina powder (it’s very strong in taste but really balances out this smoothie!)
4. Serve and enjoy.

Exotic Blend
Summer in a jar

The perfect refreshing smoothie for a hot summer’s day!

1. Cut up a banana into slices and a mango into chunks ready to put in the freezer overnight.
2. The next day, juice one whole orange and add all of the ingredients into a blender.
3. Pour into your glass and enjoy in the sun!

Happy smoothie making!

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